Farm Share & Mkt Share Ordering…9.3.2014

Farm Share Members: You are currently signed up for our Summer Season which provides you with a share of vegetables each week through the end of September. Sign up is now open on our website for our Fall Farm Share season, which provides you with a weekly share for the 9 Wednesdays in October and November.

Farm Share CSA Members – this week’s share will likely consist of:
Tomatoes (slicing and cherry), salad greens, okra, squash, onions, garlic, and sweet peppers.

Recipe Suggestions: (always cataloged on our Recipe Page)
Roasted Garlic
Roasted Garlic Vinaigrette
Ten Best Okra Recipes (from Southern Living)
Bell Pepper, Mango, & Onion Chicken (we suggest using our white onions…they are plenty sweet and delicious to sub for the red onion it calls for)
Roasted Summer Vegetables with Honey Glazed Sausage & Couscous

**

Market Share CSA Members: Choose your selection through our Online Ordering of the following harvest for pick up on Wednesday, Sept 3 (on farm, at Good Health Herbs, or at Central Montessori School in Church Hill):

Our Farm Share Bag (consisting of a farmers’ choice medley of produce, in one easy to order option), Arugula, Chard, Eggplant, Garlic, Green Beans, Okra, Peppers (padron, jalapeno, sweet yellow), Salad Mix, Summer Squash, Tomatoes…plus our Pepper Jelly, Naturally Leavened Artisan Bread, and child sized BFF Hoodies.    

** Remember our Farm Stand is open every day (as long as it’s not raining).

Enjoy ~
Janet, Dan, & the whole Broadfork Crew

CSA for Fall, Volunteers for Tour, and Salad Love…for 8.30.2014

For the love of fall….We know there is still almost a month left of summer, but with Labor Day around the corner and the deliciously cool mornings of late, we have tasted fall and are invigorated.
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Bed prep and fall planting is continuing at a manic pace.
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We aim each season to have a full selection of our fall vegetables up until Thanksgiving. This work now allows the harvest of that food then.
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A note about CSA today: Our Community Supported Agriculture members, as CSA stands for, are the lifeblood of our farm. Seriously. The 50 or so current members allow us to get our season started in January – beginning the tens of thousands of plants that become our community’s food throughout the main season. These trusting, invested CSA members then allow us to start the preparations for fall in July and August. Thank you!
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We are humbled by the willingness of our CSA members to share in the risk of small scale, biological vegetable growing.
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Now preparing for the end of our 4th season in business, we feel good about how we have been able to show our community that in hot, drought summers, cooler, wet summers, and in between, we have been able to deliver our CSA members an appropriate, delicious, nutritious return on their investment.
bouquet CNG sign We are ready to add more CSA members to our lovely little farm, and want to encourage you to join us in this relationship. Shares are now available for Fall Farm Shares – you get in return a weekly share of vegetables for the months of October and November (9 weeks). Details and sign up on our website.lettuce
(Pictured above is the salad love. Yum oh yum.) 
Pick up is on Wednesday afternoons, and on-farm pick up is always the preferred location. Additional pick up options are in the works for Church Hill (at Central Montessori School), at a private home in the Wamsley/Hull/Newby’s bridge area (Creekwood Neighborhood), and at Glenmore Yoga & Wellness in the West End. If enough shares are purchased for a given location, we will make it a drop off/pick up spot. Learn more, spread the word, and sign up on the CSA page of our website.DSC_0008
Metal roof for the barn will be delivered soon, and framing out the downstairs work areas continues…squeezed in when we can around normal farm work. It’s a slow process, and a labor of love, but each day is a day closer to this space being usable and making almost all farm activities better!

Final note today: Our farm is participating in the first annual Richmond farm tour weekend – 12 biological/organic farms are all on tour the same weekend: September 20-21, 1-6 pm both days. Hosted by the VABF and Ellwood Thompson’s, the event is still in need of volunteers to handle ticket taking/check in of tour goers at each farm. Volunteer one day and you get a free pass to tour farms the next day – plus you get to hobnob with some of your favorite farmers as part of behind-the-scenes event management. Learn all you need to know here, and sign up to volunteer (maybe even here at our farm? We’d love to have you help out.)
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This Week’s Harvest:

Our Farm Share Bag (consisting of a farmers’ choice medley of produce, in one easy to order option), Arugula, Chard, Cucumbers, Eggplant, Garlic, Green Beans, Microgreens, Mint, Okra, Peppers (jalapeno, sweet yellow, padron), Salad mix, Summer Squash, Sunflowers and Mixed Bouquets, Tomatoes (red slicers, cherries, and paste, plus economy bulk options) …plus our Naturally Leavened Bread and Pepper Jelly.

~ Janet, Dan, and the rest of the Broadfork Crew

(Want to learn more about us? Visit us on Facebook or Instagram.)

**

Recipe Suggestions: (always cataloged on our Recipe Page)
Summer Squash “Pasta” with Garlic & Basil
Simply Roasted Okra
Green Beans with Red Onion & Mustard Seed Vinaigrette
Green Beans with Roasted Tomatoes & Mustard Seeds
Asian Salad Dressing
Sweet Peppers – keep it simple. We love these most when diced and combined with diced tomatoes, plus a little salt and garlic.

We continue at two farmers’ markets this Saturday: South of the James in Forest Hill Park, from 8am – 12pm, and the Brandermill Green Market in Market Square from 9am – 12pm.

2014 Market Share CSA Members: Choose your selection through our Online Ordering to order for pick up on Saturday at our farm, at the Brandermill Green Market , or at the South of the James Market in Forest Hill Park.

**

VABF Richmond Farm Tour
Richmond Biological Farm Tour Weekend: September 20 & 21, 2014

Shake the Hands that Feed You!
Saturday & Sunday, September 20 &
 21, 1 PM to 6 PM

We will be participating in this inaugural weekend of farm tours in the greater metro Richmond area. Load up your car with friends and family (one ticket covers everyone!) and head out for a day — or two — of meeting farmers and seeing where and how your food is grown. Learn more here and stay tuned for the complete list of farms on tour.

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Farm Share & Mkt Share Ordering… 8.27.2014

Farm Share Members: You are currently signed up for our Summer Season which provides you with a share of vegetables each week through the end of September. (6 weeks of weekly goodness remain!) Sign up is now open on our website for our Fall Farm Share season, which provides you with a weekly share for the 9 Wednesdays in October and November.

Farm Share CSA Members – this week’s share will likely consist of:
Salad Mix!, Okra, Summer Squash, Sweet Peppers, Tomatoes (slicing and cherry), and Green Beans.

Recipe Suggestions: (always cataloged on our Recipe Page)
Summer Squash “Pasta” with Garlic & Basil
Simply Roasted Okra
Green Beans with Red Onion & Mustard Seed Vinaigrette
Green Beans with Roasted Tomatoes & Mustard Seeds
Asian Salad Dressing
Sweet Peppers – keep it simple. We love these most when diced and combined with diced tomatoes, plus a little salt and garlic.

**

Market Share CSA Members: Choose your selection through our Online Ordering of the following harvest for pick up on Wednesday, Aug 27 (on farm, at Good Health Herbs, or at Central Montessori School in Church Hill):

Our Farm Share Bag (consisting of a farmers’ choice medley of produce, in one easy to order option), Chard, Eggplant, Garlic, Green Beans, Mint, Okra, Peppers (padron, jalapeno, sweet yellow), Salad Mix, Summer Squash, Tomatoes…plus our Pepper Jelly, Naturally Leavened Artisan Bread, and child sized BFF Hoodies.    

** Remember our Farm Stand is open every day (as long as it’s not raining).

Enjoy ~
Janet, Dan, & the whole Broadfork Crew

Fall CSA Sign Up Open, plus How to Farm & Be Happy…for 8-23-2014

September is around the corner, the hustle to get fall crops in the ground is in full swing, and therefore Fall CSA sign up is Open! Our Fall Farm Share CSA option is where you “join” our farm as a CSA Member and get in return a weekly share of vegetables for the months of October and November (9 weeks). Details and sign up on our website.
farm share 2014-08-20(This week’s share. Mighty tasty looking, eh?)

We’ve been reflecting recently on some key elements to farming for a living and at the same time maintaining a high level of giddiness. Delightful happiness. Here’s what we’ve found so far:
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- Have somewhere to escape to in the hottest part of the season. A relative with a cottage beside a pond in a New England state is ideal. Confession time: Our family drove up to Massachusetts last week and enjoyed cool temperatures, playing in the sand, and even an amusement park. No farm work. (Well, we did pick some local blueberries, but that really doesn’t count.)
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- Read. Books, news articles in print and online, magazines, etc. This week we found interesting the article in the NY TImes: Don’t Let your Kids Grow Up to Be Farmers and the ensuing responses. Janet also recently finished reading A Farm Dies Once a Year by Arlo Crawford. We encourage you to read all of the above.095
- Include CSA Members in the farm! We just love the enthusiasm, support, feedback, and trust that you wonderful CSA members send our way.
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- Invite people to the farm. We love having customers stop by our humble self-serve, honor system farm stand. We love leading folks around on our tours and answering questions about how and why we grow food for a living. The inquiries are always thought-provoking and the encouragement is always appreciated. 014
Speaking of tours: The VABF and Ellwood Thompson’s Richmond Farm Tour is just one month away! This tour weekend will have 12 farms all on tour at the same time on those Saturday and Sunday afternoons. All farms use biological/ecological/organic methods. The tour is still needing volunteers, so if greeting local organic farm and food lovers while getting to know a local organic farmer is up your alley, please sign up to volunteer and spread the word to like-minded folks!  (Volunteer one day = free pass to visit farms the other day!) You could request to be here at our farm, or go be on a different farm!

We’ll keep adding to our happiness list. Enjoy the harvest, our friends. Salad Mix is back with us!

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This Week’s Harvest:
Our Farm Share Bag (consisting of a farmers’ choice medley of produce, in one easy to order option), Arugula, Chard, Eggplant, Garlic, Green Beans, Mint, Okra, Peppers (jalapeno, sweet red and yellow, padron), Salad mix, Summer Squash, Sunflowers and Mixed Bouquets, Tomatoes (red slicers and cherries, plus economy bulk option for seconds quality), Watermelon …plus our Naturally Leavened Bread and Pepper Jelly.

AND – we have added Broadfork t-shirts and hoodies to the online ordering page. Limited quantities and sizes, but see if there is something there that works for you!

~ Janet, Dan, and the rest of the Broadfork Crew

(Want to learn more about us? Visit us on Facebook or Instagram.)

**

Recipe Suggestions: (always cataloged on our Recipe Page)
OkraDon’t fret! It is delicious and simple to prepare. Enjoy it raw in this Curried Okra Salad or the way we most often prepare it: Baked Okra or Breaded & Baked Okra. Or go the full-monty and make Fried Okra or Fried Okra Salad (which also calls for tomatoes and bell peppers). Get extra fancy and make this Indian spiced Crispy Okra Salad from Food & Wine magazine.
Sweet Peppers – for a variation on the traditional: Mediterranean Stuffed Peppers (with couscous, cherry tomatoes, and basil)
OnionsMacerated for a tasty twist on onions (the recipe calls for red, but our white ones are plenty sweet to use)
Garlic – make Garlic Aioli
Green Beans – try them Spicy or With Feta & Walnut Sauce or With Spicy Peanut Sauce or Stir Fried with Walnuts, Mint, & Feta

**

We continue at two farmers’ markets this Saturday: South of the James in Forest Hill Park, from 8am – 12pm, and the Brandermill Green Market in Market Square from 9am – 12pm.

2014 Market Share CSA Members: Choose your selection through our Online Ordering to order for pick up on Saturday at our farm, at the Brandermill Green Market , or at the South of the James Market in Forest Hill Park.

**

VABF Richmond Farm Tour
Richmond Biological Farm Tour Weekend: September 20 & 21, 2014

Shake the Hands that Feed You!
Saturday & Sunday, September 20 &
 21, 1 PM to 6 PM

We will be participating in this inaugural weekend of farm tours in the greater metro Richmond area. Load up your car with friends and family (one ticket covers everyone!) and head out for a day — or two — of meeting farmers and seeing where and how your food is grown. Learn more here and stay tuned for the complete list of farms on tour.

 

Farm Share & Mkt Share Ordering… 8.20.2014

Farm Share Members: You are currently signed up for our Summer Season which provides you with a share of vegetables each week through the end of September. (6 weeks of weekly goodness remain!) Sign up is now open on our website for our Fall Farm Share season, which provides you with a weekly share for the 9 Wednesdays in October and November.

Farm Share CSA Members – this week’s share will likely consist of:
Tomatoes (slicing and cherry), Onions, Garlic, Sweet Peppers, Green Beans, Okra, Arugula, and Basil

Recipe Suggestions: (always cataloged on our Recipe Page)
OkraDon’t fret! It is delicious and simple to prepare. Enjoy it raw in this Curried Okra Salad or the way we most often prepare it: Baked Okra or Breaded & Baked Okra. Or go the full-monty and make Fried Okra or Fried Okra Salad (which also calls for tomatoes and bell peppers). Get extra fancy and make this Indian spiced Crispy Okra Salad from Food & Wine magazine.
Sweet Peppers – for a variation on the traditional: Mediterranean Stuffed Peppers (with couscous, cherry tomatoes, and basil)
OnionsMacerated for a tasty twist on onions (the recipe calls for red, but our white ones are plenty sweet to use)
Garlic – make Garlic Aioli
Green Beans – try them Spicy or With Feta & Walnut Sauce or With Spicy Peanut Sauce or Stir Fried with Walnuts, Mint, & Feta

**

Market Share CSA Members: Choose your selection through our Online Ordering of the following harvest for pick up on Wednesday, Aug 20 (on farm, at Good Health Herbs, or at Central Montessori School in Church Hill):

Our Farm Share Bag (consisting of a farmers’ choice medley of produce, in one easy to order option), Chard, Eggplant, Garlic, Okra, Peppers (padron, jalapeno, sweet yellow), Summer Squash, Tomatoes…plus our Pepper Jelly, Naturally Leavened Artisan Bread, and t-shirts and Hoodies.    

** Remember our Farm Stand is open every day (as long as it’s not raining).

Enjoy ~
Janet, Dan, & the whole Broadfork Crew

Small-plot Farmers in Chesterfield…and mkts for 8-16-2014

Life is good. The rains have been gentle, and the food is growing. We recently pointed out that we currently pick and sell more produce in November than in August, as August is the height of stresses on our plants and systems. We are developing strategies about how to improve upon that in the future, but in the meantime, the eating is still pretty darn good, as shown by this week’s Farm Share bag contents:
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The intermittent rains have made our self-serve Farm Stand be in a continual flux between open and closed, so Thank You for your willingness to work with those logistics.
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Check out the barn progress! Next step is to get the metal roof on, and we are waiting on our electrical permit. Once we have the walk-in cooler built inside the barn, we will move our CSA vegetable pick up area and self-serve Farm Stand into the front (covered and weatherproof!) section of the barn. We’ll keep you posted. We have to balance this work with our main job of growing and selling these vegetables, so these next couple of steps won’t happen overnight. (And we do have a baby to birth and welcome into our family this fall. So things are plenty busy.) Thanks for your patience, and get excited for an official Barn Warming Party next spring to kick off the 2015 season!
barn roof paper
A few of our customers have asked us for our thoughts on the article about Chesterfield farms (or the lack thereof) and farmers markets (or the desire for many more) that was published in last week’s Chesterfield Observer.
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The article’s main point is that there is currently a large demand for Farmers’ Markets in Chesterfield, but not enough Chesterfield produce growers to support the demand. As a full-time farming family and business, our perspective on this situation seems relevant, so we want to explore further some of the ideas presented in the article. We agree that, as the article states, it seems that “everyone wants a farmers market” in Chesterfield. We have been a vendor at the wonderful Brandermill Green Market (in Chesterfield) for 4 years now, and during that time we have been approached about our interest in selling at no less than TEN other potential markets within just a few miles from Brandermill. To every inquiry, we have enthusiastically encouraged all interested shoppers (and would-be market organizers) to visit the Brandermill Market instead. There are two reasons for this.
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One: Despite our ability to make farming a full-time business for us (we are just starting to support our family with income solely from the vegetables that we grow and sell — a status that we have worked hard to transition to over the past few years), and despite the impressive amount of vegetables we are able to produce (currently feeding the equivalent of 150 families’ worth of vegetables this year, from less than 1.5 acres of cultivated land)…Despite these facts, we are a tiny farm, a very small business, and we always only sell what we have grown ourselves, on our farm. We also sell our vegetables at a farmers’ market in Richmond, and through our own CSA program (where customers invest in the farm financially in the winter or spring in exchange for vegetables picked up later in the season). To add any other markets to that list would be impractical. For the size of our farm business, it is only practical to have, at most, two market outlets. This ties directly to our second point.
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Two: To support a business, a market (like a storefront) needs to have enough customers, making enough purchases, to support the expenses of that business at that location, including paying a living wage to the owner/operators. Currently, the Brandermill market doesn’t have a high enough volume of purchasing to meet that need of ours. We need to sell more vegetables there to actually cover the costs of us growing, picking, washing, packing, transporting, setting up, and staffing the sales of the vegetables at that market. Each year of our farm business thus far, we have sold more vegetables to customers in Richmond than in Chesterfield because there are simply more people shopping at the Richmond farmers market, and more people in Richmond choosing to sign up for a CSA share. But we are completely committed to building up more traffic at the Brandermill market and our Chesterfield-based CSA, knowing there is interest in the Chesterfield community. We are patiently and persistently working to build up that interest.
lettuce baby
To ask small farms like us to set up at multiple markets with a small volume of sales at each would be like asking a small local restaurant to open up multiple storefronts and serve meals in multiple locations around the county, but fewer meals at each location. Like any business, we need to concentrate our sales at the appropriate number of locations in order to be profitable (ie: to be able to stay in business).
zinnia bouquet
The other option to support a large number of farmers markets with small produce purchases at each is to have backyard gardens/hobby gardeners supplying the produce for them. Growing and selling produce as a hobby or side venture to earn some extra income is a laudable venture but simply creates a different dynamic in our community. A business dedicated to (and financially reliant upon) growing produce for the community full time brings a greater range of produce (more diversity) and throughout more months of the year. A business like ours also brings a long-range commitment to staying in the business of growing food due to the high level of investment we have made in this operation. Chesterfield (and even Richmond) is really quite new to the world of modern day farmers markets. Having enough producers to sell at all the farmers markets currently desired around our county requires that growers not need to make a living from it. And so, we encourage our community to think about what we – Chesterfield – want. Do we want to support (and allow profitable business) from local farmers, dedicated to full time food production? This currently means that you may have to drive a little further to a market location than you may want to. Once there is enough demand for this product to make sales at multiple county markets high enough, then more markets can exist that support profitable, local, farm businesses. Or do we want a multitude of small markets in various neighborhoods, church parking lots, and housing subdivisions that each support a hobby garden? There are benefits and drawbacks to both. We, of course, prefer the first option.
tomato grafting field day
We think our role as professional farmers is valuable in our community and we want sales at a single Chesterfield farmers market to support our business for now. Perhaps two Chesterfield markets as our business expands. We have the extremely important additional detail of being a local farm that uses organic practices. (Pictured above is Dan at an event last weekend by the Virginia Association for Biological Farming where we presented about our experiences with a VABF tomato grafting research project — investigating the economics of tomato grafting on a small-scale, organic farm.) We are Certified Naturally Grown, for which standards mirror the USDA Certified Organic standards. Most local farms do not use organic practices (which the Observer article alludes to), and we are extremely proud of and committed to this healthy way of growing food. The cost of our produce may be higher than those set by part-time gardeners selling their vegetables or by conventional (not organic) farms, but a communities’ willingness to pay the price for what it costs to grow organic produce, including paying a living wage to the farmer, is a positive reflection of a community’s healthy values.
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We hope this overview of the finer details behind local markets and local producers helps round out the current reality for Chesterfield, and we look forward to being part of the continued growth of our county’s commitment to local, organic farms and their produce.
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Certified Naturally Grown Farm in search of:
::Low-boy (small) electric hot water heater/tank ::Hot plate ::Large, metal shelving

This Week’s Harvest:
Our Farm Share Bag (consisting of a farmers’ choice medley of produce, in one easy to order option), Basil, Carrots, Chard, Eggplant, Garlic, Green Beans, Kale, Okra, Peppers (jalapeno, Sweet Lunchbox, sweet red, padron), Summer Squash, Sunflowers, Tomatoes (red and green slicers, including economy bulk option for seconds quality) …plus our Pepper Jelly.

AND – we have added Broadfork t-shirts and hoodies to the online ordering page. Limited quantities and sizes, but see if there is something there that works for you!

Enjoy ~

Janet, Dan, and the rest of the Broadfork Crew
(Want to learn more about us? Visit us on Facebook or Instagram.)

**

Recipe Suggestions: (always cataloged on our Recipe Page)
Parmesan Summer Squash Cakes
Fried Squash Chips with Yogurt Sauce (the recipe calls for zucchini, but our yellow squash is even better)
Carrot Cake Muffins (let’s just pretend they are healthy, slather on some cream cheese, and give ourselves a break, eh?)
Steak & Tomato Salad with Balsamic Glaze (the multi-colored tomatoes they feature are lovely, but it will still be delicious with our gorgeous red ones.)
Pickled Jalapenos (This recipe is for 20 jalapenos, but you can slice and brine just a couple to get a feel for it. OR – Let us know if you want to request pints of jalapenos to make a whole jar like this recipe calls for. They are tasty.)
Crostini with Candied Cherry Tomatoes and Ricotta & Goat Cheese
Farro Salad with Lemon Basil Dressing & Carrots
Smoky Carrot Fries
Afghani Rice with Carrots & Raisins

**

We continue at two farmers’ markets this Saturday: South of the James in Forest Hill Park, from 8am – 12pm, and the Brandermill Green Market in Market Square from 9am – 12pm.

2014 Market Share CSA Members: Choose your selection through our Online Ordering to order for pick up on Saturday at our farm, at the Brandermill Green Market , or at the South of the James Market in Forest Hill Park.

**

VABF Richmond Farm Tour
Richmond Biological Farm Tour Weekend: September 20 & 21, 2014

Shake the Hands that Feed You!
Saturday & Sunday, September 20 &
 21, 1 PM to 6 PM

We will be participating in this inaugural weekend of farm tours in the greater metro Richmond area. Load up your car with friends and family (one ticket covers everyone!) and head out for a day — or two — of meeting farmers and seeing where and how your food is grown. Learn more here and stay tuned for the complete list of farms on tour.

Farm Share & Mkt Share Ordering… 8.13.2014

Farm Share Members: Our season has one “vacation week” of your choosing built in. If you have not yet notified us of when to put a hold on your share for a week, please do so as soon as you are able. Thanks!

Farm Share CSA Members – this week’s share will likely consist of:
Green Beans, Carrots, Tender Sweet Multicolored Summer Squash, Tomatoes (slicing), Cherry Tomatoes, Sweet & Bell Peppers, Garlic, and a pair of Jalapenos.

Recipe Suggestions: (always cataloged on our Recipe Page)
Parmesan Summer Squash Cakes
Fried Squash Chips with Yogurt Sauce (the recipe calls for zucchini, but our yellow squash is even better)
Carrot Cake Muffins (let’s just pretend they are healthy, slather on some cream cheese, and give ourselves a break, eh?)
Steak & Tomato Salad with Balsamic Glaze (the multi-colored tomatoes they feature are lovely, but it will still be delicious with our gorgeous red ones.)
Pickled Jalapenos (This recipe is for 20 jalapenos, but you can slice and brine just a couple to get a feel for it. OR – Let us know if you want to request pints of jalapenos to make a whole jar like this recipe calls for. They are tasty.)
Crostini with Candied Cherry Tomatoes and Ricotta & Goat Cheese
Farro Salad with Lemon Basil Dressing & Carrots
Smoky Carrot Fries
Afghani Rice with Carrots & Raisins

Market Share CSA Members: **We are not able to deliver to Good Health Herbs on Wednesday, Aug 13. We also will not be baking bread on Wednesday, Aug 13 or Saturday, Aug 16.** Remember our Farm Stand is open every day (as long as it’s not raining). Choose your selection through our Online Ordering of the following harvest for pick up on Wednesday, Aug 13 (on farm or at Central Montessori School in Church Hill):

Our Farm Share Bag (consisting of a farmers’ choice medley of produce, in one easy to order option), Carrots, Chard, Eggplant (a few), Garlic, Okra, Onions, Peppers (padron, jalapeno), Summer Squash, Tomatoes…plus our Pepper Jelly, and t-shirts and Hoodies.    

Enjoy ~
Janet, Dan, & the whole Broadfork Crew